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Piano, Organ & Other Keyboard Instruments

All enquiries to the Section Co-Ordinator
Mrs Fiona Austen, 07724 903212, Email

Fiona Austen studied solo piano at the Royal No More ...

Fiona Austen studied solo piano at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester after studying as a specialist musician at Wells Cathedral School.  Since then she has enjoyed a long and varied career as a music teacher and performer, working in a number of schools throughout the UK and giving recitals in many different venues. 

She is also a harpist, and currently teaches both piano and harp in three local schools as well as privately.  Fiona took part in Music Festivals herself as a child, and has since entered her own pupils for Festivals many times. 

As a passionate teacher, she loves preparing pupils for Festivals and seeing the inspiration they gain from the experience of performing and hearing others perform, sharing a love of music together

Sometimes Levels are given rather than grades. For details please click here

GUIDANCE

Where reference has been made either to a specific grade, or to terms such as elementary, intermediate etc, or to a level expressed in Grades, it is expected that entrants, parents, and especially teachers, will bear in mind that it is in the spirit of the festival to try to adhere carefully to the standards suggested by the the relevant grade.  If in any doubt about the level of a piece then teachers should not hesitate to contact the Keyboard Section Co-ordinator who will be happy to give guidance.  

Whilst it is obviously acceptable to play an exam piece in the festival, wider repertoire is strongly encouraged, in the context of the above advice.

Candidates may play only one piece in each class, unless the description of the class expressly states otherwise.

Within any class, the adjudicator will pay more heed to the standard of the performance than to the level of difficulty of the piece. 

Adjudicator: Michael Young BA Mmus ARCM

Michael studied piano with Lilian Niblette and David Parkhouse, and composition with Charles Hutchings, reading music at Reading University , UEA and RCM. He is currently Professor of Piano at RWCMD and was previously Head of Keyboard at Wells Cathedral School.

Michael has performed widely as solo pianist, chamber musician and accompanist in UK, USA, Germany etc. broadcasting on radio, and has made a special study of the works of Korngold.

He has taught piano at RAM, RCM, TCM, Birmingham Conservatoire and the Universities of Cambridge, UEA and Liverpool and given masterclasses and lectured in numerous countries.

Michael has been an adjudicator for The British and International Federation of Festivals for nearly 20 years, and has adjudicated at numerous festivals, including two visits to Hong Kong. He has been an ABRSM examiner for over 35 years, visiting over 20 countries, and is a member of diploma, jazz and presenter panels.

Where Levels are given rather than grades, approximate levels are:

  • Beginner: Pre Grade 1 & Grade 1
  • Elementary: Grades 2 & 3
  • Intermediate: Grades 4 - 6
  • Advanced: Grades 7 & 8
  • Open: Post Grade 8